Friday, January 31, 2020

#242NewsBahamas Newsletter Edition: January 31st 2020

We must not #forget

Dear Readers,

What seems like only yesterday to residents in the Northern Bahamas, has actually been 5 long months of very recovery time for the thousands who were impacted by the passage of hurricane Dorian. Though #242NewsBahamas' offices - which are located in Freeport, Grand Bahama - received only minimal electrical damage to equipment, members of our team and their families were severely affected. We, like countless others, are still working through the unimaginable physical mental and emotional challenges caused by that dreaded storm and each day, we fight to regain a sense of normalcy. 

As we were preparing our weekly editorial we came across this writeup which appeared as Tuesday's editorial in The Official Nassau Guardian Ltd. (1844). The writer so aptly summed up the complex emotions which many of us living, working and surviving in both Grand Bahama and Abaco and so we thought it would be great to share it with our readers. We hope that this article acts as a reminder to those persons who were not affected by this storm, directly or indirectly, to remember those who were and still are recovering from Dorian, and send a prayer or two their way today.
Bahamas Participated In Us-Caribbean Ministerial Roundtable Hosted By Michael Pompeo, United States Secretary Of State In Kingston, Jamaica

Bahamas Minister of Foreign Affairs the Hon. Darren A. Henfield was among a caucus of Caribbean nations whose Foreign Ministers recently attended a Ministerial Roundtable in Kingston, Jamaica, hosted by the United States Secretary of State the Honourable Michael Pompeo. 

The high-level meeting held on 22nd January, 2020, provided a platform for discussions on shared democratic values and critical hemispheric matters particularly security, development cooperation, prosperity and human rights. Talks also centered on financial services inclusive of blacklistings and de-risking, youth empowerment, education and the diversification of the Organization of American States (OAS), all crucial to U.S.-Caribbean relations.
Minister Of Agriculture Addresses Concerns Of E. Coli Contamination In North Andros

The following statement is an update relative to the recent discovery of E. coli in parts of the well water system affecting farms in North Andros. 

The issue of E. coli in private well water in North Andros was brought to the attention of the Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Resources (MAMR) in December 2019 by The Bahamas Agricultural Health & Food Safety Authority (BAHFSA). The Minister, Hon. Michael Pintard acted immediately and directed BAHFSA to investigate the extent of the problem and the nature of the threat to the farming community and the wider public.
Prime Minister Minnis urges junkanooers to take cultural festival ‘beyond Bay Street’

Prime Minister the Most Hon. Dr. Hubert Minnis met with Junkanoo A Group leaders at the Office of the Prime Minister on Friday, 24 January 2020. 
During the meeting, the Prime Minister invited junkanooers to collaborate on a national plan aimed at moving the cultural event “beyond Bay Street.” 

Prime Minister Minnis encouraged the leaders to make the most of their upcoming conclave scheduled for March and pledged the Government’s support to advance the festival on the international stage.“The Government will do all that it can to assist. Just as reggae is synonymous with Jamaica around the world, we want to see the same for Junkanoo and The Bahamas,” said the Prime Minister. 
Miami University through the GBDRF, helps Grand Bahamians Get Around Post Storm

The Grand Bahama Disaster Relief Foundation (GBDRF) continues its mission to support the residents of Grand Bahama in the wake of Hurricane Dorian. As the response phase has transitioned to recovery GBDRF’s focus has shifted from meeting the immediate needs of residents with relief to helping improve their quality of life and restoring a sense of normalcy. This week, the GBDRF helped facilitate the delivery of street bikes to The Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute, the University of The Bahamas Northern Campus, and the Bahamas Defence Force Ranger Programs. 

“The bikes, which were donated to GBDRF via the University of Miami, arrived in Grand Bahama via Carnival Cruise lines,” explained GBDRF Logistics Manager, Noel Clarke. “We thought these would be great for young college students and those not able to purchase or replace destroyed vehicles.”
Grand Bahama Port Authority Affirms Its Commitment To Ensure Rebuild Of The Airport Facilities In A Timely Manner And In The Best Interests Of Grand Bahama

The Grand Bahama Port Authority, Limited (GBPA) is firmly committed to the continued restoration and economic recovery of the city of Freeport and Grand Bahama Island. Of paramount focus is the full return of international flights and the rebuilding of a permanent airport facility to boost the economy.
“Given the inevitable reduction, due to the hurricane, in the number of international commercial flights into Freeport at the present time,” said Sarah St. George, the GBPA’s Acting Chairman, “we understand the responsibility of the Grand Bahama Airport Company to balance appropriate employment level with current operations.

It is always with deep regret that such difficult decisions are made and unfortunately a number of employees were impacted, all of whom have been treated with fairness and respect.” The GBPA confirms that they, along with their long-term partner in the Grand Bahama International airport, Hutchison Port Holdings, are in ongoing discussions with the Government of The Bahamas regarding a transition of ownership to the Government.
Save The Bays, Waterkeepers: 7 Years Of Urging, Calling Attention To Reality Of Climate Change, Now Time To Act

Leaders of two of the nation’s strongest voices in the cry for attention to climate change are urging top educators to impress upon students that the time to act is now. Save The Bays Chairman Joseph Darville and Waterkeepers Executive Director Rashema Ingraham have been meeting with principals and other educators throughout Grand Bahama for more than two weeks, imploring them to sensitize students to the reality of climate change.

They have equipped them with scientific data about rising seas, warmer temperatures and stronger storms – and they have armed them with practical mitigation tools from the value of planting trees to preserving sand dunes. 
“After living through and experiencing firsthand the effects of Hurricane Dorian, Save The Bays and Waterkeepers committed to working together and with other NGOs to sound the message to rebuild the coastal buffer zones that will act as natural defenses for our islands,” said Ms. Ingraham.
Bud Light Ends 2019/20 NFL Promos With Superbowl Trip and Party

SuperBowl LIV will get underway on February 2nd, and diehard football fans are already gearing up for the showdown between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers. Widely regarded as one of the biggest sporting events of the year, Superbowl LIV will take over the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Florida with one lucky winner from The Bahamas enjoying the action in the stands courtesy of Bud Light and the Bahamian Brewery & Beverage Company. 

Bud Light is the National Football Leagues (NFL) Official Beer until 2022. As part of its recent promotions to support the NFL, Bud Light has been giving Bud Light drinkers chances to win all-expense-paid trips to watch the Super Bowl, all over the world. Here in The Bahamas Bud Light fans had four months to purchase a six-pack of beer to enter to win. The amazing opportunity included two tickets to the event, as well as airfare, accommodations, VIP access to all bud light parties and NFL events.
BMOTA Grand Bahama Welcomes European Tour Operators On Familiarization Trip

The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation (BMOTA) hosted a group of French and Portuguese tour operators on a familiarization visit to Grand Bahama from January 25-27. 
BMOTA organized the visit to acquaint the tour operators with Grand Bahama and equip them to more adequately sell the destination to customers in their respective markets. To this end, the group of six enjoyed a tour specially customized to showcase the island’s range of hotels, restaurants and attractions.

“Grand Bahama is a very important destination for the French market and now the emerging Portuguese market, so we wanted to show them the status of the island,” said Karin Mallet-Gautier, area manager for the Bahamas Tourist Office in France.
Prize Money for Best Sustainable Project Provided by Royal Caribbean

A popular campaign that persuaded students to beautify their environment is offering civic groups a $10,000 cash prize for executing a project that helps make the Bahamas cleaner, greener and more pristine, Minister of Environment and Housing Romauld ‘Romi’ Ferreira told Rotarians on Friday.

The Rotary Club of East Nassau was the latest stop on the environment minister’s tour as he challenges civic groups to envision a different kind of Bahamas, one brimming with creative energy and free of environmental ills. Last week, Ferreira spoke to more than 2,000 congregants at four Big Harvest Church services and he has continued to make the rounds of neighbourhood associations. 
The Annual General Meeting of the Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce which was held on Wednesday, January 29th, 2020, congratulations to the newly appointed chamber of commerce officers and directors for the 2020 and 2021 period. 

Officers:
President: Mr. Gregory Laroda Sr. (Director, Buckeye Bahamas Hub)
1st Vice President: Mr. Mick Holding (Independent Consultant)
2nd Vice President: Mr. Lawrence Palmer (President, Freeport Insurance Agents & Brokers)
Treasurer: Mr. Ralph Hepburn (Financial Controller, Underwater Explorers Society)
Secretary: Mrs. Lesley Davis-Baptista (Vice President/General Manager, Paint Fair)

Directors (Newly Elected):
Mrs. Donna Christie-Ferguson (Financial Controller, Equinor South Riding Point)
Mrs. Carmel Parker-Dean (Branch Manager, Fidelity Bank)
Mrs. Talia Wildgoose-Davis (Senior Marketing Manager, Aliv)
Mrs. Diane Morgan (Property Manager, Milo Butler & Sons Investment - Freeport )
Mr. Daniel Lowe (General Manager, City Associated)
Mr. Hans Schuhbauer (Chief Operating Officer, Pharmachem Technologies (GB) Ltd.)

Serving Second Year of Two Years Term:
Mr. Dennis Knowles (President, MicroTech Sales)
Mr. Dave McGregor (Chief Operating Officer, Grand Bahama Power Company)
Mr. Antoine Brooks (President, Island Traders); and
Mrs. Christine van der Linde (Customer Service Manager, Grand Bahama Development Company)

The above names shall become effective in their respective positions with immediate effect.
We are thrilled to announce Phase I of our recovery/rebuild with the arrival of our beautiful La Boit Specialty Vehicles Inc. Inc. mobile clinic! 
This 26' fully equipped unit will serve as our clinic until our shelter clinic is rebuilt. Then we will be taking it out into the communities to do spay/neuter until we have covered this entire island.

There are so many people to thank but we must start with our many amazing supporters from near and far whose donations made this possible. We are also very grateful to Dr. Mary Gardner, (U.S. veterinarian and daughter of HSGB board member Christine Gardner), for scouting mobile units and helping us find the perfect one. 
Natalie and the talented people at Applied Graphics Limited did an amazing job with the signage and we very much appreciate the discount. Koni Wade at La Boit was a delight to work with and made the entire process easy and smooth. 

Big thanks to Tropical Shipping for bringing her over safely and for the discount, and thanks as always to our awesome friends at Freeport Ship Services for clearing her for us. We can't recommend these two companies highly enough for the services they provide - always timely, professional and fair.

Our longtime friend and partner Ellen Kohn of The Kohn Foundation has been a rock for us for years but never more than these last five months. The amount of accounting, grant writing and phone calling she has done is staggering and she has been there for us every step of the way. 

To the pet owning public on Grand Bahama - our clinic is open! We're also very pleased to welcome Dr. De'Yanza J. Hanna who joined us this month as our Staff Veterinarian. Please call 727.1390 for appointments (our landline still out).
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New Providence Events
February 1st 2020
  • Jazz at Jacaranda 6pm - 9pm
February 2nd 2020
  • Cricket Club Super Bowl Party
February 8th and 9th 2020
  • Tru Tru Bahamian Festival 10am
March 7th 2020
  • BNT Pig Roast Dinner and Bon Fire 7pm
Grand Bahama Events
February 1st 2020
  • Garden of the groves farmers market 9am - 11am
  • Sip and Pain - Rand nature Centre 7pm - 9pm
  • May I Call you Queen 7pm - 10pm
February 4th & 6th 2020
  • Songwritters in Hopetown
February 8th 2020
  • Kids Chocolate Valentines Workshop- Bootleg Chocolates 10am - 2pm
March 5th - 7th 2020
  • A sustainable Grand Bahama Exhibition
  • March 7th- Humane Society Pub Quiz 6pm Dinner/7pm Quiz
March 21st 2020
  • Humane Societys Presidents Cocktail Party 6pm
Abaco Events
February 2nd 2020
  • Abaco Inn Super Bowl Watch Party 4pm
February 8th 2020
  • Petes Pub Art Show
March 21st 2020
  • Reef Ball 2020
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